NSW immigration eases 491 visa criteria and extends cut-off date to 26 June 2020

NSW has removed the 12 month living and working requirement and currently only requires you to meet Department of Home Affairs’ requirements for the 491 visa and:

  1. have an occupation on the NSW Stream 1 Regional Skilled Occupation List,  and;
  2. be currently living in a designated regional area of NSW

NSW immigration is accepting for NSW nomination for the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491), opened on Monday 15 June 2020 and extended accepting applications to 5pm Friday 26 June 2020.

Frequently Asked Questions:
I am not currently living in regional NSW, am I eligible for NSW nomination?

No. Candidates can only apply for NSW nomination if they are eligible for this visa and:

  1. have an occupation on the NSW Regional Skilled Occupation List, and;
  2. be currently living in a designated regional area in NSW.

If you do not meet ALL of these requirements you are not able to apply for NSW nomination. Applications that do not meet these requirements will be declined.

The NSW nomination fee is non-refundable.

How long do I need to have been living in regional NSW?

There is no minimum time-frame to have been residing in regional NSW. You must provide evidence to prove your current regional NSW residency. Evidence could be:

  • Bank statement showing your transactions in 2020
  • Rental agreement / lease / evidence of rent paid
  • Utility bills e.g. gas, water
  • Other bills, e.g. phone, internet
  • Current visa
  • Driver’s license
  • Proof of age card
  • Other evidence showing you are living in regional NSW
Do I need to be employed or have previous employment experience?

No. You are able to apply if you currently reside in regional NSW and have an occupation on the NSW Regional Skilled Occupation List.

Will offshore candidates be able to apply for NSW nomination?

No. Only applications from candidates currently residing in regional NSW are being accepted.

Where can I live and work in NSW under the subclass 491 visa?

The Department of Home Affairs determines which regions of Australia are eligible for the 491 visa.

Eligible regions are here: designated regional area postcodes.

How do I satisfy the employment requirement?

Your employment must meet Home Affairs’ requirements for skilled employment. For more information, please refer to Points table for Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491).

Can I move to regional NSW now and become eligible?

You cannot move to a designated regional area in NSW to satisfy NSW nomination requirements for this visa. Your place of residence must already be well established and demonstrated through evidence such as: rental payments, rental agreements, bank statements showing purchases and utility, phone or internet bills.

The below requirements do not need to be met for a 491 NSW nomination: 

Does my employment for the last 12 months need to be with the same employer?

No, you may have been employed by more than one employer in regional NSW during the last 12 months to satisfy this requirement (removed requirement).

Does my employment for the last 12 months need to be continuous?

Yes, you need to have been continuously employed in regional NSW for at least the last 12 months (removed requirement).

If you have been employed in more than one job during the last 12 months, the gap in between your jobs should not have been for more than one month.

What are the requirements for who can employ me?

Your employer must be registered in Australia and operating in regional NSW (removed requirement).

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